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Live Life Well @ School

Lunch box full of food

Live Life Well @ School is supported in NSW primary schools to promote healthy eating and physical activity to all students. NSW Health works with NSW Department of Education, the Association of Independent Schools of NSW and the Catholic Schools NSW to support schools to implement the program through a variety of resources and professional learning opportunities. 

The program aims to:

  • get more students more active, more often
  • focus on healthy eating habits. 

Live Life Well @ School assists schools to:

  • develop whole-of-school strategies that support physical activity and healthy eating
  • improve the teaching of nutrition and physical education through a focus on PDHPE programs
  • foster community partnerships that promote and support whole-of-school strategies
  • provide opportunities for more students to be more active, more often.

Live Life Well @ School trained schools are supported via site visits, phone calls and email follow-ups. Health promotion officers:

  • assist schools to develop an action plan
  • support schools to develop a whole-of-school approach to nutrition and physical activity
  • assist in the development of community-focused nutrition and physical activity strategies
  • provide schools with information about upcoming community events that promote healthy eating and physical activity
  • provide access to teaching resources.

Children spend a large proportion of their time at school and schools provide the perfect environment for children to develop healthy eating habits. Nutrition education is an important component of the school curriculum in NSW and schools can do a lot to promote and encourage healthy eating behaviours.

Resources to help provide a healthy eating environment at school:

Regular physical activity is important for reducing the risk of disease and promoting a healthy lifestyle. Schools provide a unique opportunity to encourage physical activity through physical education lessons, organised sport and lunchtime physical activity.

Schools also provide the perfect opportunity for students to learn and develop Fundamental Movement Skills (FMS). FMS such as running, catching, throwing and jumping are the foundational base upon which all other sports and movement skills are built. Children who can confidently perform FMS as children are more likely to participate in sports as adults and lead a healthy and active life.

Resources to improve FMS at your school:

School canteens have an important role to play in providing healthy food and drink choices for students. A healthy school canteen supports a ‘whole-of-school’ approach to healthy eating and reinforces health messages taught in the classroom.

The NSW Healthy School Canteen Strategy was launched in February 2017 and supports healthy eating by increasing the proportion of healthy choices available, ensuring only healthy options are promoted, supporting water as a drink and making the healthy choice the easy choice. The Strategy applies to all NSW Government (primary, secondary and central) schools with a canteen. For more information visit the Healthy School Canteens website.

Resources to help support a healthy school canteen:

Crunch & Sip is a set time in class when students can refuel on a piece of vegetable or fruit and some water. Students who are well hydrated and not hungry perform better in the classroom and are less disruptive. Many students do not consume enough vegetables, fruit or water.

Each school can choose a time that suits them to implement Crunch & Sip. Some schools prefer to have a set time each day, some prefer to crunch inside the classroom and some prefer to go outside for a quick break. Crunch & Sip can be a great time to discuss healthy eating with your students.

The Kitchen to Garden Recipe Book has loads of recipes for your school.

Involving students in gardening and cooking has many social, academic, behavioural and environmental benefits. Kitchen gardens can enable students to work collaboratively, be creative and learn authentically. Involving students in food growing experiences promotes healthy eating and equips students with life skills that can enhance personal emotional and physical wellbeing.

Resources to support kitchen gardens in schools:

Healthy fundraising can help your school’s Parents and Citizens (P&C) Association raise money for your school while promoting healthy eating, physical activity and wellbeing. Mid North Coast Health Promotion have developed a Healthy Fundraising book full of lots of great ideas for your next fundraiser.

Active travel means finding alternate ways to get to school such as walking, cycling, scootering or skateboarding. Children’s active travel to places they regularly go provides significant health benefits including an increase in physical activity, can improve concentration, increase independence and promote positive self-esteem.

For more information Heart Foundation’s Healthy Active by Design have published an interesting document about active travel to school. 

For more information contact Alison Walton. Email alison.walton@health.nsw.gov.au

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